Tadpoles. Pelobates, Bufo, Hyla from The tailless batrachians of Europe.
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Image ID: SIL-SIL-007-502-02
Original Caption: Tadpoles. Pelobates, Bufo, Hyla
The word "larvae" may make you think of caterpillars becoming butterflies, but it also can be used to describe tadpoles becoming toads, frogs, and other amphibians. Young tadpoles have round bodies and very long tails. Specific characteristics, such as the shape of the mouth or the tadpole's overall size, can help to identify the species of amphibian it will become. The tadpole in image one and two will develop into a frog called, confusingly, a Spade Foot Toad. The tadpoles in images three, four, and five will become real toads. The tadpoles in images six through eight will develop into assorted Asian tree frogs. Tadpoles hatch from eggs, usually in water, and they tend to start out eating lots of algae. Larger tadpoles may eat insect larvae, such as mosquito larvae. In turn, tadpoles are food for fish, birds, diving beetles, and sometimes other tadpoles!